Riverton Journal | August 2021

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August 2021 | Vol. 31 Iss. 08


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By Mimi Darley Dutton | m.dutton@mycityjournals.com


he Point will hold an Open House Aug. 12 to announce a framework master plan for the 600 acres of state-owned property that has been touted as a once in a generation project. After hiring internationally renowned firm Skidmore, Owings & Merrill last December, much of 2021 was spent developing the plan with multiple public input opportunities. The Point also announced the hiring of Scott Cuthbertson as Director of Operations. “The Open House is an opportunity for us to roll out the framework master plan for the site. We want people to be able to see how their input has been transferred into plans and how the pieces come together,” said Alan Matheson, The Point’s executive director, who said they’ve listened to more than 10,000 people in the process thus far. “People will see a vibrant, future-focused community that tries to improve the quality of life for people in Utah.” According to Matheson, the main components of the framework plan are innovation, future-focused transportation, an emphasis on sustainability, and places for people to gather to enjoy entertainment and open space. Where innovation is concerned, Matheson said public and private sector partnerships will work to solve some of society’s challenges such as air quality, changing climate, advanced energy innovation, biotechnology, life sciences, and potentially cyber security. He anticipates cutting edge research will take place at the site with “incubators and accelerators that help take those ideas to market.”

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In advance of the August Open House announcing a framework master plan, The Point provided this visual of what the public can expect. (Courtesy The Point) Future-focused transportation plans include transit Standard Bus Rapid Transit with designated rights of way, throughout the site so that people living and working there can signal prioritization (traffic lights change to keep the special have but won’t need more than one vehicle. It will feature Gold buses moving) Continued page 6

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Riverton City Journal

CANYON CONGESTION – CAN WE SOLVE IT? Utah’s growth and popularity as a year-round recreation destination are

Carbon Gondola = dioxide reduced 56%

Weigh in now through September 3 and tell UDOT to support the gondola.

having profound impacts in our canyons. This is especially evident in Little Cottonwood Canyon, where traffic often snarls the highway and backs up into neighborhoods. After decades of discussions, UDOT is nearing the end of a study to address these transportation issues and has identified two preferred options: widen the road to accommodate more diesel bus service and add a half-mile of snow shed tunnels or install a high-capacity gondola system.

SUSTAINABILITY A gondola is the only sustainable option that provides a carbon-neutral system


without impacting water quality and wildlife habitat. Building a four-lane highway,

A gondola system would open up reliable secondary access for the

pavement and disrupt existing climbing access. Building a gondola would take

and the hillside stabilization required to do so, will add hundreds of feet of

canyon during emergencies and road closures. This is critical for a canyon

that’s home to the most avalanche-prone highway in North America. Cars and buses not equipped to travel the steep canyon often bring traffic to a standstill, and avalanche cleanup can leave visitors stranded. A gondola would rise above the road, withstanding wind and snow to move people safely and efficiently from the base station to the top of the canyon in 37 minutes.

1,400 cars off the road per hour, decreasing daily emissions by 56%.

Scan above to submit your comment.

For more gondola information or to see a video rendering, visit www.GondolaWorks.com

SOLUTIONS While road expansion and a gondola would cost about the same, the gondola costs less to operate and maintain and lasts three times longer than a bus. The gondola base station proposed at La Caille provides 1,800 parking stalls with tie ins to regional bus service. A gondola preserves Little Cottonwood Canyon for future generations because it solves the congestion that exists now and offers a way to control access in the future. During peak hours a 30-passenger cabin could arrive every 30 seconds and, in coordination with in-canyon vehicle tolling, can also be used to limit the number of daily visitors.

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Bluffdale Classroom at Riverton Hospital (Building 2, 4th floor) RSVP for this FREE class at rivertonhospital.org under classes and events or call Jennifer Goodman at (801) 285-2557. Each participant will receive a t-shirt and stop the bleed kit. Seating is limited to 10 for each class.


August 2021 | Page 3

Riverton Rodeo: skydivers, churros and renaming the arena By Mathew Baron | m.baron@mycityjournals.com


day at the rodeo can be a pleasure. As part of Riverton Town Days, a multi-day and multi-venue festival over the Fourth of July week, the city held a two-day rodeo at the Riverton Rodeo Arena. Sold out both days, the rodeo saw long lines, plenty of food vendors, a national anthem sung by Gretchen Chidester and skydivers who greeted the crowd with red, white and blue colors. While deep fried meat and candy are standard rodeo food, one food truck stood out amongst the soda, ice cream and dinner options: Churrology Truck. The Churrology truck team of Preston Norton and Matt Basham run a growing business in Riverton. Popular enough that they are building a second Churrology truck to get them into even more events. They can be found on social media at Facebook and Instagram. In two The Riverton Rodeo sold out on both nights. (Mathew Baron/City Journals) hours, they put out 700 churros. “We always thought about doing a food truck,” Norton said about the origin of Churrology with his good friend Basham. “We kicked around the idea for a while. I got the idea of why don’t you do churros. We decided let’s see if it sticks. We opened up as a proof-of-concept. We found out within about two weeks the concept was a good one. It just exploded.” They do a number of events in the Riverton area. If you need churros on the spot then you can reach them at Churrologyutah@gmail. com. As the rush of traffic was starting to die down for the night, Mayor Trent Staggs stopped by. The Circle J rodeo and the Mascro Family run the rodeo, which featured a dedication to the family that started the rodeo in Utah. Thanking the contributions of the Mascro Family, Staggs, along with the Riverton government, is currently renaming this venue The Circle J Rodeo Arena. l

Skydivers landed in the arena carrying the American flag. Riders participate in the Riverton Rodeo. (Mathew Baron/City Journals)

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Left: Different bands have graced the stage of Riverton’s Concerts in the Park, seen here in 2019. Right: Residents come in 2019 to enjoy the Concerts in the Park at Riverton City Park. (File photo City Journals)

Concerts in the Park returns for August By City Journals


fter a year hiatus, like most things, Riverton’s Concerts in the Park return for the month of August. Each Sunday at 6 p.m. at Riverton City Park, 1452 West 12600 South, will see a new musical group hit the stage. Residents are en-

couraged to come, bring their own blanked or lawn chair and spread out on the grass. The concerts, which started in 2015, will feature Bluegrass Thunder on Aug. 1, a bluegrass band based out of Utah Valley known for bandmembers banter and jokes.

Aug. 8 will see Trenton McKean grace lined up to bring their extensive catalog of the stage. The singer-songwriter is known for hit song covers. his “working class songs pleayed with street Finally, Aug. 22 will close out the series life grit, authenticity and heartland soul” ac- with country singer Mark Owens. l cording to his website. Aug. 15 has four-man band Relativity


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Continued from front page and raised platforms. “It will be like light rail on rubber tires,” Matheson said. There are also plans for an autonomous circulator to move people throughout the site without a car and the possibility of “air taxis” or people-moving drones. “We’re building a community for coming generations, not just for today, so we have to set our sights on what will be, not just what is,” Matheson said. Approximately 140 acres will be used for an open space and trails system. Features include a central park for public gatherings, a river to range trail connecting the Jordan River Parkway to the Wasatch Mountain trails that simultaneously provides habitat for wildlife, and a series of “green connections” for people to use for walking, biking, scooters, and whatever the future might bring. Regarding sustainability, the framework master plan works to reduce emissions and employs practices and designs that lend themselves to low-energy and low-water use. With the housing crunch, the plan is to provide a range of housing for various incomes and backgrounds to create mixed neighborhoods. Housing will include single-family homes, townhomes, condos and apartments. By providing a variety of housing options, they hope that people can both live and work at the site. “We call this a framework plan because

it’s not a final plan. It gives direction to our next steps but has built-in flexibility to accommodate changes in the economy, technology and other circumstances,” Matheson said. The current prison inmates will be moved in roughly one year to the new correctional facility. That will be followed by demolition, remediation, site preparation and backbone infrastructure such as major roads, water systems, trails and parks. Matheson anticipates vertical development to begin in 2024 or 2025. “We’ll start seeing some buildings go up. That will be exciting as this public vision becomes reality.” Cuthbertson was chosen as Director of Operations after a national search with more than 130 applicants. He’s spent 15 years working on major development projects around the world and he founded Sterling Capital Partners headquartered in Salt Lake City. He holds degrees from Brigham Young University, Georgetown University and the University of Oxford’s Saïd Business School. The Point’s Aug. 12 Open House will be held from 4 to 7 p.m. at the Fred House Training Academy, 4727 Minuteman Drive in Draper. The public can participate in-person or via The Point’s YouTube channel during scheduled Open House hours. A recording will be posted online following the event. l

Riverton City Journal



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Jordan District opens a new chapter in literacy education By Jet Burnham | j.burnham@mycityjournals.com


tudents in Jordan District schools will be learning to read in a whole new way this fall using a new curriculum based on the science of reading. With this more balanced literacy approach, students learn to recognize letter sounds and letter patterns and then decode them within words. “I feel like it’s the piece that we’ve been kind of missing for a while—how to teach them the basic skills in the most logical sequence,” second grade teacher Laurie Ferrini said. For the last several years, children have been taught to read more by guessing than by identifying. The focus was on comprehension and wasn’t effective for many kids. “We just created a lot of guessers,” said Mandy Thurman, a district Elementary Language Arts consultant. “Now we’re really trying to give them the phonics skills so that they can come across a word, and even if they don’t know what it is, they can use these skills, and now they’ll know [how to read it.]” In addition to a focus on phonics skills, the new curriculum also introduces direct assessments that reveal specific holes in a child’s skills and provides targeted interventions to fill them. The district has increased funding this year to provide additional aides (with increased hours) to work with students in daily targeted intervention groups, using curriculum-provided materials to address students’ specific needs.

“I’m excited for kids to read,” said Michelle Lovell, a former kindergarten teacher who works for the district as a K-3 language arts consultant. “There’s nothing I want more than to know that all of our kids are leaving third grade with the reading skills that they really need, that we’re not letting any students by without giving them those skills.” The intervention time, which will be held for 30 minutes each day, will also benefit students who are proficient readers. “Often we’ll spend so much time focused on the kids that are struggling, that our kids that are really needing more challenge become unengaged and bored,” Thurman said. “And so we’ve been working with the Gifted and Talented department so that those kids get what they need as well in terms of extension and enrichment.” Educators at Heartland Elementary have been piloting the curriculum for two years and have seen measurable performance gains on reading assessments. “Last year for the first time ever, we saw kids maintain—or even go up—by the middle of the year,” Heartland Principal Buddy Alger said. “They were acquiring skills faster than they really ever had on the measures that are in [the state reading assessment.]” Ferrini credits the new phonics and targeted intervention programs for the gains her students have made. “Using the [curriculum] as a screener really is a good diagnostic of what they’re miss-

ing,” Ferrini said. “So it really takes the guesswork out of what they’re missing and where they need help. It’ll point you in the right direction, so you’re really saving a lot of time. This tells us right away and we can get started on that intervention quickly.” Reading aides at Heartland also reported increased student confidence. “There’s power in knowledge and seeing kids being empowered by that knowledge,” Alger said. “It’s been really powerful and inspiring for our school.” “As a teacher it’s exciting to see kids want to read,” Ferrini said. “They’re excited to read and to go to their groups to read and to learn the new skill that they’re working on. They’re taking ownership of their own reading now.” Teachers said parents will notice a difference in how their students are reading at home. “What parents will see is that their students are able to do more problem solving in their reading,” Heartland first grade teacher Amy Harvey said. “They’re going to be able to use the patterns that they have learned in the classroom when they sit down to read at home. They can break words apart and sound it out and they will be able to do that on their own.” Parents will see less of a focus on guided reading levels, reading comprehension passages, memorizing sight words, and sounding out words one letter at a time. Rather, students will learn the different types of syllables, how to predict what sound a vowel will make, and hand gestures to help identify patterns within

words. Parents are encouraged to continue to read to and with their children often. Equally important, said Lovell, is for parents to continually expose their children to new experiences and places to help them build vocabulary and background knowledge. “You do that by talking to kids, having great conversations, reading with kids and taking them to explore places,” she said. Thurman said kids can read words but can’t truly comprehend what they read without having a basic understanding of what things are. “If they have solid word recognition and decoding ability, and they fully understand the language, and they have lots and lots of background knowledge and a high vocabulary, that’s really what will make reading comprehension,” Thurman said. The new curriculum launches this fall. Every K-6 teacher in the district received two full days of training over the summer to understand the science of reading and learn the curriculum tools. Thurman said it’s part of Superintendent Anthony Godfrey’s vision for the district to ‘be united, be intentional, be curious.’ “It’s the first time in my career of 19 years that I feel like we are united as a district, where every single teacher will have two days worth of training on all of these parts and pieces,” Thurman said. l

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Riverton City Journal

Friday Fun Nights through August 27 By City Journals

Top: A family band, Relativity, performs on the lawn behind the Old Dome at Riverton City Park on July 23 in front of dozens of residents casually relaxing around the park. The also features vendors and food trucks to go along with the park’s amenities. Bottom left: Vendors, such as Utah State’s 4H Extension booth shown here, line the grass next to the west sidewalk Bottom middle: Relativity performed on July 23 during one of Riverton’s Friday Fun Nights. The weekly event started on July 16 and runs every Friday to Aug. 27 with musical entertainment usually lined up somewhere between 6 and 8:30 p.m. Bottom right: The night features vendors, food trucks and entertainment to go along with the park’s amenities from pickleball and tennis to playgrounds and a splash pad.


August 2021 | Page 9

JATC students bring home gold, silver, bronze medals By Jet Burnham | j.burnham@mycityjournals.com

Memory loss that disrupts daily life may be a symptom of Alzheimmillion people are living er’s 6.2 or another dementia. Alzheimer’s is a brainwith disease that causes 6.2 million people are living with a slow decline in memory, thinking and reasoning skills. There are Alzheimer’s diseaseEvery in the United 10 warning signs and symptoms. individual may experience Alzheimer’s disease in the United one States. or more ofOver these signs in a different degree. If you notice any 34,000 people in Utah of them in yourself or a34,000 loved one,people please see in a doctor. States. Over Utah

alone. This disease kills more people

10 SIGNS OF This disease kills more people alone. each year than breast cancer and ALZHEIMER’S DISEASE

eachloss year 1. Memory that than disruptsbreast cancer and prostate cancer combined, and is the daily life prostate cancer combined, and is the 2. Challenges in planning or 4th leading cause of death in Utah. problem solving 4th leading cause of death in Utah. 3. Difficulty completing familiar tasks at home, More than 104,000 people in Utah More than 104,000 people in Utah work or at leisure 6.2for millionsomeone people are living with Alzheimer’s provide living 4. Confusion withunpaid time or care disease in the United States. Over provide unpaid carepeople for insomeone living34,000 place Utah alone. This disease kills withunderstanding Alzheimer’s disease. The impact is 5. Trouble more people each year than breast cancer with Alzheimer’s disease. The impact is visual images and special and prostate cancer combined, and is the widespread and can be devastating to 4th leading cause of death in Utah. relationships widespread and can be devastating to 6. New problems with words families. More than 104,000 people in Utah proin speaking or writing families. vide unpaid care for someone living with 7. Misplacing things and Alzheimer’s disease. The impact is widelosing ability to Forthemore information, aboutto families. spreadto and learn can be devastating For more information, to learn about retrace steps Together we can work to findor a cure support groups or other resources, 8. Decreased or poor and ultimately have our first survivor! support groups or other resources, or judgment Join the fight and lend your to to get from helpwork immediately contact thevoice 9. Withdrawal or this critical cause by attending the to get help immediately contact the social activities Walk to End Alzheimer’s this fall. There Alzheimer’s Association’s free 24/7 are eight Walks throughout the state 10. Changes in mood Association’s Alzheimer’s free 24/7 of Utah: and personality Helpline at:

Helpline at:

AUGUST 28 Wasatch Back -Basin Recreation Center SEPTEMBER 18 Cache County- Merlin Olsen Park Cedar City- Cedar City Motor Co. SEPTEMBER 28 Utah County-The Shops at Riverwoods Salt Lake County- REAL Salt Lake Stadium OCTOBER 9 Weber/Davis- Ogden Amphitheater Tooele County- Skyline Park OCTOBER 23 St. George- Ovation Sienna Hills

800-272-3900 800-272-3900 or visit our website at: or visit our website at: www.alz.org/utah www.alz.org/utah For more information or to get help immediately contact the Alzheimer’s Association’s Togetherfree we24/7 can work Together we can work Helpline at:

to find a cure to find a cure and ultimately have our first survivor! 800-272-3900 and ultimately haveRegister our first survivor! at: orJoin visit our thewebsite fight at: and lend yourtoday voice to www.alz.org/Walk Join the fight and lend your voice to www.alz.org/utah this critical cause by attending the this critical cause by attending the Page 10 | August 2021 Walk to End Alzheimer’s this fall. There Walk to End Alzheimer’s this fall. There are eight Walks throughout the state

Top: Layla Basic used the nail care skills she learned in her JATC classes to win state and national competitions. Right: Layla Basic’s nail design, inspired by the west coast, includes intricate images of the Santa Monica Pier, Golden Gate Bridge, beach, and lighthouse. (Photo courtesy of Shannon Mechling.)


ayla Basic brought home the gold for Utah and for Jordan District with her performance in nail design at both the SkillsUSA state competition in the spring and again in the national competition this summer. Basic learned nail tech skills from classes she took at the Jordan Academy for Technology and Careers her senior year. She practiced her nail design for the competition for five months. “I think it was important to learn how much progress you can make by just working on something,” Basic said. “I think that’s why I did earn the gold, because I took so much time and effort, and, honestly, I was hard on myself when I was doing it, and I put my all into it.” Basic’s nail design stood out from the other competitors, many who created nail patterns, with her intricate images of the Santa Monica Pier, Golden Gate Bridge, beach, and lighthouse. Basic said the competition was challenging because of the time factor-- it normally took three hours to create her complex nail design—the competition gave her one. However, because it was a virtual competition this year, she said it wasn’t as stressful. She wasn’t surrounded by competitors in a foreign environment but in her JATC classroom, where she’d been practicing her design for months. She said placing at the top of the competition has given her confidence. Preparing for the competitions also gave her a much-need-

ed boost this spring, when she was feeling low due to the pandemic and an unusual senior year. “That was the one thing I did have motivation for so I really tried hard at it, and I’m glad I did because it got me out of that weird state,” she said. Basic’s nail instructor, Shannon Mechling, encourages her students to participate in competitions because they are a great opportunity for students to further their skills. “The competition arena is probably one of the best places to learn because competitors are not afraid of sharing tips, techniques, different things to do or try,” she said. Additionally, students get feedback from judges on ways they can improve. JATC web design instructor Melinda Mansouri requires her students to participate in competitions to help them develop work skills, as well as grit, determination and teamworking skills. “The students leave with better skills— they just walk out better web developers,” she said. “They just walk out with confidence that they didn’t walk in with. And anytime you are starting a skill set, that confidence, being able to really produce that in that amount of time, just changes everything about what’s next for them.” Mansouri noticed a difference in her students who weren’t able to participate in the SkillsUSA 2020 competition, which was canceled due to COVID-19. They were less confident heading into their spring internships.

Riverton City Journal

Tinh Nguyen and James Davies earned Silver in Web Design at the National SkillsUSA competition in June. (Melinda Mansouri/JATC)

This was one of the few years any of Mansouri’s students have qualified for nationals, which only accepts one team from each state. And it was the first year she had students finish in the top 10. James Davies and Tinh Nguyen earned Silver in Web Design. Together, they designed and coded a website from scratch in just 12 hours, a project Mansouri said would normally take 50 man hours. The two-member team also earned gold

at the region and state competitions, where their final scores were well above the second and third place winners, said Mansouri. “These are amazing kids,” Mansouri said. “They just have such skill and talent. It’s exciting for me to send them out and see what happens next. I’m always watching to see what they’re doing post graduation.” For more information about JATC classes available to add to high school schedules, visit jordanteach.org. l

Medalists for the SkillsUSA National Leadership and Skills Conference: Layla Basic, Gold in Nail Care James Davies and Tinh Nguyen, Silver in Web Design Kaitlin Beck, Top 9 award in Customer Service

Medalists for the SkillsUSA Utah state competition: James Davies & Tinh Nguyen, Gold,Web Design Jesse Gavino & Daniel Gross, Silver, Web Design Eternity Draper, Bronze, Pin Design Ethan Stott, Bronze, T-Shirt Design Hayley Arnold, Gold, Criminal Justice Kaitlin Beck, Gold, Customer Service Brock Lauitzen, Gold, Fire Fighting Giovanni Mammano, Silver, Fire Fighting Bryton Orgill, Bronze, Fire Fighting Dannon Sumsion, Gold, Job Skill Demonstration O Kari Barclay, Silver, Job Skill Demonstration A


Kelsie Rowe, Bronze, Job Skill Demonstration A Katelyn Andrus, Bronze, Job Skill Demonstration O Lily Watterson, Bronze, Job Interview Ezekial Tatum, Gold, Barbering Sarah Eddwards, Silver, Cosmetology Layla Basic, Gold, Nail Care Jessica Hernandez Sandoval, Silver, Nail Care Brogen Astle, Gold, Welding Sculpture Forest Curtis, Silver, Welding Sculpture Taylor Wood, Zach Smith & Troy Dailey, Silver, Welding Fabrication

August 2021 | Page 11

3 new schools offer virtual learning By Jet Burnham | j.burnham@mycityjournals.com


indergarten teacher Lacy Abouo reluctantly took an online teaching position last year. Now, after an eye-opening and successful school year, she has requested a full-time position to teach virtually. Abouo will be teaching at the new Rocky Peak Virtual Elementary School, which, along with Kelsey Peak Virtual Middle School and Kings Peak High School, comprise Jordan School District’s Virtual Learning Academy. “This online program is going to really blow a lot of people out of the water because it’s going to be incredible,” Abouo said. “The kids learn and grow—it’s truly inspiring.” The virtual schools, opening this fall, offer personalized, flexible learning with both synchronous (live) and asynchronous (recorded) options to meet students’ needs. Rocky Peak Elementary Principal Ross Menlove said the past 18 months of online education have been a learning experience for educators. “We’ve learned that with the right conditions, the right students, and people making the right choices, virtual learning works extremely well,” he said. “Teachers and students can work very well together online and they can build great relationships. We’ve

Page 12 | August 2021

learned that kids are learning and progressing. Kids are doing the work that they would do in a building and being able to do it just as well virtually.” Abouo said with good organization and parent support, she was able to provide a complete kindergarten experience for her virtual students last year, with plenty of fun and hands-on learning as well as social and emotional skill development. Abouo likes that with virtual learning, she can personalize assignments and activities catered to each student’s specific needs and abilities. Her favorite part of online teaching is the unique ways she has been able to connect with her students. Through virtual one-onone “lunch dates,” she learned what was going on in her students’ lives. “Because they had their computer, they’d walk me around their house,” Abouo said. “So I’d get to meet grandma and she’d tell me her favorite food. Then they’d walk to their kitchen and show me all their favorite foods. So it was like I was a part of their family.” Abouo said private virtual break-out rooms allowed her to support struggling stu-

dents in ways she couldn’t in an in-person classroom. “I don’t always have the time or the availability in a classroom setting because I have 35 students, all needing my attention,” she said. “But online, you have these little periods where you can pull kids and talk to them individually. It was magical.” Third grade teacher Ami Anderson also taught online last year and applied to teach at Rocky Peak Elementary this year. She loves the flexibility of a virtual classroom which allows her to meet students’ needs individually, whether they are on grade level, gifted, or have special needs. “It gives me the opportunity to help these kids learn the best way they know how to learn, and then to give them that social component that they really need,” Anderson said. Building strong relationships with students and creating a good classroom community are priorities for Anderson. “I’ve taught 25 years and one thing that is consistent every single year is students need to feel connected within the classroom, and they need to feel safe,” she said. “If they do that, then they flourish.”

With virtual classes, she uses small group virtual breakout rooms before and after class time for informal interactions—chatting and playing games—to allow class members to get to know her and each other. The pandemic-driven online teaching of last year is different from the Jordan Virtual Academy curriculum, which was developed by Jordan District teachers, said district spokesperson Sandy Riesgraf. One aspect that was missing from past virtual formats was in-person, hands-on learning opportunities. Virtual Academy students have the option to participate in group projects, science labs, art, music, P.E. and other learning activities held twice a week at learning centers housed at Hidden Valley Middle and Majestic Elementary. Like traditional brick and mortar schools, the three virtual schools each have their own identity, principal and staff, community council, PTA and resources, such as a school psychologist. For more information, visit connect.jordandistrict.org l

Riverton City Journal


RIVERTON REVIEW Official Newsletter of the Riverton, Utah City Government MAYOR’S MESSAGE

A Vision for the Historic Downtown By Mayor Trent Staggs Over the last few years, we have seen Riverton’s commercial development grow by over 1 million square feet, along with sales tax revenue almost doubling. Much of this growth has taken place on the west side of our city. We have seen exciting projects like Mountain View Village Phase I completed, with Phase II well underway. Costco is under construction and many other exciting commercial and retail opportunities will be announced in the near future. As exciting as these opportunities are, I have always been a proponent of creating equitable opportunities for our historic downtown area on the east side of Riverton near Redwood Road and Riverton City Park. In 2018, I sat down with the City Council to create an official strategic priorities list which included Priority #3 – “Create a revitalized, pedestrian-friendly downtown destination.” In support of this priority, we have taken many important steps that could enhance the downtown area. First, multiple studies have been performed from various professional and student-led organizations. These groups were

tasked with creating unique land use designs that could improve the vibrancy of the downtown area, keeping in mind its distinct heritage. These plans have been shared with our planning commission and resident volunteer groups. The City Council plans to also share them with the public to receive feedback. Second, there often needs to be financial incentives offered to prospective developers for large scale projects like the redevelopment of a downtown. Looking at different tools available to our city, the council recently approved the creation of a Community Reinvestment Area (CRA). This option permits cities to designate specific areas that could use additional investment, and work with property taxing entities to share the increased property tax revenue as a result of new development. This newfound “tax increment” can be used to encourage specific development that is desirable to the community. Third, the city organized a


market study for the Community Reinvestment Area to analyze the downtown’s potential uses, its strengths and weaknesses, as well as the viability of commercial and retail markets. I’ve heard from many of you about the desire of having additional restaurants and office space in this area and am working with the private development community to push for this type of use. Fourth, $150,000 was approved in the current FY 21-22 RDA budget for downtown signage and beautification projects. These monies in the RDA come from tax increment. I’ve asked staff and our Historic Preservation Commission to conceptualize streetscape, monument signage, trails and lighting concepts that would really distinguish this area

of the city, keeping in mind its historical significance. The city will also be putting $200,000 toward improvements to the Sandra N. Lloyd Community Center this year. Fifth, we are working with Salt Lake County on potential redesigns of the club house at Riverbend Golf Course and development of their adjoining property. The ultimate vision is to create a destination that can be used for golf tournaments, weddings and other events. With your help and the support of the City Council, I believe we can substantially improve the downtown area, inviting uses that our residents will enjoy for decades to come; all while maintaining a semblance of the historic nature of this oldest part of our city.



Redistricting of City Council Districts MAYOR Trent Staggs tstaggs@rivertonutah.gov 801-208-3129

CITY COUNCIL Sheldon Stewart - District 1 sstewart@rivertonutah.gov 801-953-5672 Troy McDougal - District 2 tmcdougal@rivertonutah.gov 801-931-9933 Tawnee McCay - District 3 tmccay@rivertonutah.gov 801-634-7692 Tish Buroker - District 4 tburoker@rivertonutah.gov 801-673-6103 Claude Wells - District 5 cwells@rivertonutah.gov 801-875-0116

CITY MANAGER David R. Brickey dbrickey@rivertonutah.gov 801-208-3129

CITY OFFICES City Hall.............................. 801-254-0704 Administration.................... 801-208-3129 Animal Control................... 801-208-3108 Cemetery............................ 801-208-3128 Code Enforcement.............. 801-208-3108 Development Services ....... 801-208-3138 Fire Dispatch (UFA)............. 801-743-7200 Justice Court....................... 801-208-3131 Recreation & Events........... 801-208-3101 Police.................................. 385-281-2455 Public Works....................... 801-208-3162 Recorder............................. 801-208-3128 Utility Billing....................... 801-208-3133 Water.................................. 801-208-3164

FIND US ONLINE! @rivertonutahgov www.rivertonutah.gov PAGE 2

By Councilmember Sheldon Stewart We will be participating in the processes tied to the 2020 Census and the impacts on the political process of aligning and redistricting areas this year. Many do not know that this process also occurs at the local level, and sometime this year, we will make adjustments to our local city council districts. As Riverton has grown, most of the growth has occurred west of Bangerter Highway. The growth over the next ten years will be primarily in this area as well. There is presently only one council district that is completely west of Bangerter Highway, which is District 1, and the one I represent. The remaining four districts meet at roughly 2700 W. As a city, it is important that we ensure that we have proper representation that covers our city and is balanced through the representative areas. It is important that the boundaries of our districts:

2. That the remaining three districts have representation west of Bangerter highway with an alignment near the Welby Jacob Canal, which is approximately 4300 W. 3. The growth area of the city is split proportionately among all districts. 4. That multiple council districts share in the representation or areas where budget, events, and activities are driven, such as school district, resource centers, and city amenities and services. Some things residents may not know or be aware of is: 1. Schools: District 1 has no students that are included in Riverton High School boundaries. All attend either Mountain Ridge High School or Herriman High School; however, more than 90% of city resources for the high schools are dedicated to

Riverton High School and programs that target participation from Riverton High School. 2. Apartments: An estimated 80% of apartment complexes that exist or are approved are within the boundaries of District 1 and the only other district that has apartments is District 5. 3. Growth: Nearly 100% of the large areas remaining for growth are found in District 1 and District 3. As our city grows, we face new challenges. During this time as we evaluate the boundaries within our city for those that represent it, there is opportunity to correct some of the disparity that occurs as our city expands. These will be the challenges and issues that the City Council and city staff will face as we propose changes through this process. Please be sure to reach out to your councilmembers to ensure your voice is heard through this process.

1. Are split so that each district has relatively equal population. 2. Each district accounts for the areas of projected growth so that one district is not overburdened with the majority of growth. 3. That representation accounts for the various boundaries of other entities, such as school boundaries. As we go through the alignment process, I personally have goals that will ensure: 1. At least two council districts are drawn completely west of Bangerter Highway.

The City Council will make adjustments to city council district boundaries based on the results of the 2020 Census. Citizens are encouraged to reach out to their councilmembers if they have comment on the redistricting process.



RPD Unveils Safe Exchange Zone By Chief Don Hutson As part of the Riverton Police Department’s ongoing effort to identify services which may be beneficial to our community, we recently unveiled our Safe Exchange Zone program to assist members of our community to feel a little safer while conducting property or custody exchanges. As the popularity of online commerce continues to increase, we recognized the need to provide a public location where people can meet to conduct transactions and feel more secure. We have designated two well-marked parking stalls immediately in front of our police station at 12810 S Redwood Road and identified this location as our Safe Exchange Zone. This is a highly visible, well-lit area and is under 24-hour recorded video surveillance. It is also visible to officers as they perform their duties at the police station. Additionally, if a person is concerned they may be buying stolen property, they may request a police officer meet them and check available databases to ensure the

property being exchanged has not been reported stolen. The proximity of the exchange zone makes it far more convenient for our officers to provide this service.

bring someone along to avoid being alone, do not get in a stranger’s vehicle, and do not hesitate to call our dispatch center if something seems suspicious.

This area could also be utilized by disputing parties or for custodial transfers which have the potential to escalate. Traditionally, these situations, often referred to as “keep the peace” calls, have occurred in less controlled environments. Providing a designated and monitored area for these situations will mitigate the potential risk for all involved parties.

We hope this program will benefit our citizens, and we look forward to seeing you in “The Zone” soon.

Of course, there is always the possibility that things can go wrong even when steps have been taken to minimize risk. We encourage all our residents to use caution whenever they are conducting business with unknown persons. When possible, always


Register for the Fall Classic Pickleball Tournament on September 17-18 at Riverton City Park featuring a pool bracket with various divisions. Register online at rivertonutah.gov/recreation.


The recently unveiled our Safe Exchange Zone located in front of the Riverton Police Station on 12810 S Redwood Road provides a place for members of our community to feel a little safer while conducting property or custody exchanges.

Riverton City Election Notice




GENERAL ELECTION: Tuesday, November 2, 2021 CANDIDATE FILING PERIOD: August 10-17, 2021 OFFICES UP FOR ELECTION: Mayor, City Councilmembers in District 3 and District 4


Registration for Flag Football ends in August. Children in 1st-6th Grade are eligible to participate. Season features 7 games. Begins September 7. Register at rivertonutah.gov/recreation.


On December 15, 2020, the Riverton City Council voted to participate in the Municipal Alternate Voting Methods pilot project for the 2021 Municipal Elections. This voting method is better known as Ranked Choice Voting. It eliminates the need for a primary election and pushes back the filing period from June to August.



CITY COUNCIL • August 3 & 17, 7 p.m. PLANNING COMMISSION • August 12 & 26, 6:30 p.m.




Friday Fun Nights in Riverton

Food Trucks • Entertainment • Summer Market • Movie in the Park • Games Come enjoy a casual night out at Friday Fun Night in Riverton every Friday night in August from 5-9 p.m. at Riverton City Park! Bring your own blankets or lawn chairs.

Entertainment Schedule August 6 Waiting for James August 13 Sean’s Garage August 20 Bluegrass Thunder August 27 City Jazz Big Band

Movie Schedule (Begins at dusk) 5 - 6:30 p.m. August 6 The War with Grandpa 6:30 - 8:30 p.m. August 13 Hook 6:30 - 8:30 p.m. August 20 Onward 6 - 8 p.m. August 27 The Addams Family

Concerts in the Park Sundays | 6 p.m. | August 1 - 22 Riverton City Park Event Lawn August 1 August 8 August 15 August 22

Bluegrass Thunder Trenton McKean Relativity Mark Owens

Bring your own chairs or blankets to sit on.


Trailblazing Women of Utah Exhibition

Riverton Public Safety Night

Come see powerful photos and read inspiring stories about trailblazing women from our city and state. Open Monday - Wednesday, Noon - 5 p.m. Thursday and Friday by appointment only. Group and school tours are also welcome by appointment by calling 385-237-3421.

Bring the family and come learn more about the Riverton Police Department and Unified Fire Authority.

Through September 22 Old Dome Meeting Hall

Wednesday, August 4 6-8 p.m. | Riverton City Park

There will be activities, demonstrations, and lots of fun! Free and open to all.


Never-Ending Network Evolution, Are All Broadband Providers Up for the Challenge? By Bryan Thomas, VP Engineering, Comcast Mountain West Region

Working and learning remotely for the past 15 months brought unique circumstances for all of us to navigate in several areas, and central to it all is having access to a reliable, secure internet connection. The pandemic posed the biggest technological test in the history of the internet. When offices and schools closed in March 2020, internet traffic across the U.S. surged by 20 – 35 percent, as millions of people transitioned to working, learning and consuming all of their entertainment at home. Now our communities are transitioning back to working from offices or making hybrid work arrangements, and schools are planning to reopen their doors beginning in August. A flexible, continuously evolving network staying ahead of customer demand is critical. The success of a network hinges on three factors: decades of strategic investment, continuous network innovation, and the best team in the business. Investment

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Our programs are taught by PGA Professionals, Todd Tanner & Stacey Jones. 1 and 1.5 hour programs are held once a week. Each class has a 5:1 student to instructor ratio. All programs include short game practice, range balls, in depth instruction, video analysis and on course playing time.

Available Programs: 4-7 Beginner • 8-12 Beginner • 9-13 Advanced • 14-18 Advanced • Girl Only • Women Only • Adult Programs




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In the last three years alone, Comcast invested $389.6 million in technology and infrastructure in Utah, including upgrades to our network. Since 2017, Comcast devoted more than $15 billion nationwide to strengthening and expanding our network – including building more than 33,000 new route miles of fiber, which is like driving from Portland, Oregon to Portland, Maine more than 10 times. Every two and a half years, the company has added as much capacity to the network as it has in all the previous years combined. One of the greatest advantages of our massive network is we already pass 60 million homes and businesses with a powerful, fiber-dense network, and we have the ability to quickly, surgically, and efficiently add additional fiber and capacity when and where it’s needed. Because of our continuous investment in our network, we can often complete targeted upgrades in weeks rather than months and years. We have a proven track record of completing network upgrades and improvements ahead of schedule, and delivering the performance our customers need well before they need it. Innovation Continuous innovation throughout every part of a network is key. Comcast is a leader in the 10G initiative, which leverages new standards and technology to dramatically increase internet speeds. The technology lays the groundwork for network operators, like us, to deliver multigigabit download and upload speeds over connections already installed in hundreds of millions of homes worldwide. Meaning, we can deliver multigigabit speeds to homes without the need for massive digging and construction projects. With this technology, Comcast can continue to deliver ultra-fast service today, while simultaneously building capacity for future needs.mAnd with decades of experience, Comcast is advancing network virtualization and data access to cloud-based technologies for greater performance, increased reliability and easier upgrades. Simply put, we’re able to meet the needs of tomorrow – today, and continually improve the customer experience by delivering faster speeds, greater capacity, and more dynamic connected experiences. Team Support In addition to investing billions in building and evolving our network, Comcast engineers, artificial intelligence scientists, and cybersecurity experts across the country are continuously developing and deploying new technologies to protect our customers and ensure our network can meet emerging threats and challenges. We have a team of cybersecurity experts scanning the network for threats and actively defending our network and our communities. Our teams are made up of elite talent working at every level of the network from software and artificial intelligence at the core, to the best field teams laying new fiber and upgrading the network year-round in all conditions. New network entrants who don’t have a plan or resources to support never-ending network evolution, cybersecurity protection, and hardening may put customers who rely on them at unnecessary risk. As the country shifts yet again, home and business internet connections remain essential for video calls, education, healthcare access, workforce development, streaming entertainment, and more. At Comcast, we remain relentlessly focused on connectivity, to deliver the smartest, fastest, most reliable network to the communities we serve – keeping you connected to more of who and what you love.

August 2021 | Page 17

Essential school bus drivers, nutrition, custodian staff needed for upcoming school year By Julie Slama | j.slama@mycityjournals.com


s the school year approaches, many students and their families may be wondering who will open the door and greet them at the start of the school year as they board a big yellow school bus. Some area school districts also may be wondering as websites and signs across the Salt Lake Valley are posted, advertising bus driver positions. As of July 1, in Canyons School District, there were 40 positions open for bus drivers or 18% of its staff who transport about 20,000 students. In addition, 35 of the 55 attendant positions were available. Canyons School District Transportation Director Jeremy Wardle has worked in the industry the past 14 years, working his way up from driving while putting himself through college. “There’s always turnover,” he said. “I think the difference this year is COVID and the fallout from that.” Wardle said that a large number of the district’s drivers are on a second career, but with the extra protections during COVID-19 pandemic and drivers’ possibly health issues, there just were not enough drivers returning. Plus, he said the area has changed, which

means more drivers are needed to transport schoolchildren. “Twenty years ago, Draper was more farmland than it was houses and now it’s the complete opposite; we’ve seen a huge population boost not only in our district, but in other districts. We’re becoming more of an urban setting. It seems to be the same way in all districts across the country,” he said. Jordan School District also has a need for drivers. “We always are short bus drivers; Every school district in Salt Lake County, or probably in the state, there’s high turnover,” said spokeswoman Sandra Riesgraf. “And we’re a growing school district, so we always have more routes.” To attract more drivers, Canyons has boosted their salaries to $21.19 per hour for starting pay. Attendant pay is $14 per hour. Wardle said there are part-time and full-time positions available for the 180-day school year and full-time contracts come with benefits. Murray School District spokesman Doug Perry said Murray’s district also may be down a few drivers at any given time, along with the same numbers of nutrition

A friendly wave and smile is what students and parents expect this fall from their bus drivers, but some school districts are still hiring people to fill the vacant positions. (Photo courtesy of Canyons School District)

services staff and custodians; the district also increased pay for those positions. “We only have about a dozen or so regular bus drivers and about four dozen lunch

workers and a couple dozen custodians in total so our shortages might be two-three positions at any given time out of those three groups, which is pretty manageable,” he said.

Riverton football kicks off Aug. 13 Photos by Travis Barton


year after going 6-6, a season that featured its first win over local rivals Bingham since 2003, the Silverwolves return to the gridiron for the 2021 season. Riverton kicks off the year at Syracuse on Aug. 13 before returning for its home opener on Aug. 20 against Dixie. The team will play six non-region games that will also include Pleasant Grove, Cyprus This season marks the beginning of a new region alignment. The previous two seasons saw the Silverwolves battle Jordan and East in addition to west side opponents Copper Hills, Herriman and Bingham. For the next two seasons Riverton will play all teams within their close geographic realm, removing East and Jordan and replacing them with the recently-formed Mountain Ridge and former region rival West Jordan. Riverton plays West Jordan (Sept. 17), Herriman (Oct. 1) and Mountain Ridge (Oct. 8) on the road while hosting Copper Hills (Sept. 24) and Bingham (Oct. 14). l

Page 18 | August 2021


Aug. 13 at Syracuse Aug. 20 vs Dixie Aug. 27 vs Cyprus Sept. 3 vs Springville Sept. 10 at Pleasant Grove Sept. 17 at West Jordan Sept. 24 vs Copper Hills Oct. 1 at Herriman Oct. 8 at Mountain Ridge Oct. 14 vs Bingham Riverton City Journal

Pay in Murray District for bus drivers is $22 to $25 per hour; nutrition service, $13 to $18 per hour; and custodians are $11 to $15 per hour. Granite School District also continues to see “traditional vacancy challenges” in transportation and custodial departments as well as classroom and school aides, said spokesman Ben Horsley.

“Part-time para-professionals continue to be difficult to find in this economy,” he said. “One strange challenge is the amount of open school psychologist positions we still have at this point in the year.” Starting salaries are about $21 per hour for bus drivers; $18 for custodians and $11 for hourly para-professionals. In Canyons, commercial driver licenses

are required before bus drivers take the wheel, however, there is free in-house training and testing, Wardle said. Drivers also are expected to perform a pre-trip “look over” that ranges from brake check to light cleaning. Eight mechanics on staff are responsible for repairs. Additionally, there are trainings for the position from first aid and CPR to student management and emergency evacuation. Attendants also have additional training for working with students with special needs and learn how to load a wheelchair and strap it securely, he said. Flexibility and schedules being similar to schools attract many personnel to the position. Wardle, when he was a driver, was able to study in between routes and said the position is attractive to parents, who start and end their day at about the same time of their kids and have the same school vacation schedule. “The kids are the highlights from drivers. They get to know them. They’ve seen them from kindergarten through high school. Some of them work well into their early 80s because they love the kids,” he said. While Riesgraf said Jordan School District has a “moderate” need for nutrition services staff, Canyons District is looking to hire 34 kitchen staff and 23 cashiers in schools for the upcoming school year, said Sebasthian Varas, nutrition services director. Starting wages increased for those posiSigns advertising the need for bus drivers are popping up throughout school districts as there aren’t enough tions in Canyons with starting pay at $15.50 people to fill the routes. (Julie Slama/City Journals) per hour for kitchen staff who typically prep

and cook meals and deep clean the kitchen afterward; and $12.16 per hour for cashiers, who are responsible for ensuring student meals meet with the USDA guidelines for reimbursement of the meal. There are advancement possibilities, he added. Canyons positions include training in equipment, first aid and district policies; each employee is responsible for having a food handler’s permit. Ideal candidates should be able to follow directions, work as a team, be able to meet some of the physical demands of the job and have a high school diploma or are working to earn a GED or equivalent, Varas said. He said that it’s an ideal position people who want day-time positions and especially, for parents. “If your kids are at the school, you work the time when they’re at school and you’re at home when they’re home. You don’t work any weekends or holidays and we provide you with a lunch and you’re making some extra money,” he said. “It’s a fun job. You get to interact with the students, which I think is fantastic. This is a great opportunity to make a difference in a student’s life. I think one thing that we’ve learned from the pandemic is how essential the nutrition services workers are. So, if they truly want to make a difference in someone’s life, come and work with us. It’s hard work, but it’s a very rewarding position, knowing that we’re feeding students.” l


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School district leaders hope summer sessions slowed academic relapse By Julie Slama | j.slama@mycityjournals.com


his summer, students across the Salt Lake Valley may not have experienced the summer slide as much as previous years. Summer slide is a term used to describe academic regression many students experience over the summer months, and nationwide, teachers and school districts are trying to make a point of helping students review, gain access to resources and learn individually or in smaller settings this summer through summer school options. Locally, many school districts invited students who may have fallen behind during the COVID-19 pandemic to summer session so they could review their previous instruction or enhance their learning through additional practice. In Murray, several hundred students of all grade levels were identified and took part in the four-week session. “We identified the kids we needed to reach most and worked with their parents to see if we could get them to come and get caught up,” said Doug Perry, Murray School District spokesman. “We feel really good about it and made some excellent progress with many students. It was not without challenge and there are still going to be some students who need support and resources, particularly those that did not take advantage of the opportunity. But we feel we are in better shape with many of them than we were at the end of the school year.” This was the first summer school session in the district after a number of years. Students attended a school per level—elementary, junior high or high school—where they typically spent three to four hours five days per week and received some individualized instruction. Meals and snacks were served, and incentives were given to “keep them engaged,” he said. In Jordan School District, spokeswoman Sandra Riesgraf said that students of every level were able to get help at their regular schools as the district used CARES Act funding to support teacher salaries. There were two voluntary summer sessions and meals were provided. “Some type of summer school was offered at every school in the district, both elementary and secondary,” she said, saying it was a change from just holding it at Valley High School. In the elementary level, students who needed extra help mostly with math and literacy were invited to participate from 9 a.m. to noon. In the middle school, students who needed extra help in a subject area as well as ninth-grade credit recovery attended the same time period. High schools offered credit recovery all day. While the total number of students who participated wasn’t available for press deadline, Riesgraf identified 1,908 secondary students who registered in the first sum-

Page 20 | August 2021

Students have fun learning and reviewing concepts while attending summer school in Murray School District. (Photo courtesy of Murray School District)

mer session. “Our elementary teachers and principals I’ve talked to were pleasantly surprised by the number of kids that showed up for summer school, so it’s been a positive outcome,” she said. Canyons School District also offered its Summer Boost program, targeted to about 1,500 elementary and middle school students who needed the extra help or a bump up in their education. They also received free meals and other social services. “The biggest thing is that I hope our students can catch up and master their unfinished learning,” said Alta View Elementary School Principal Scott Jameson who had about 20 of his students attend morning lessons at nearby Altara Elementary. “They focused on their literacy and math. On the last day, I told them ‘nice job’ as they came off the bus and even walked partway home with a couple of them.” The program was housed in five schools throughout the district four mornings per week for three weeks. Natalie Gleave was a Summer Boost administrator at Crescent Elementary, which served about 300 students from 10 different elementary schools. “Our teachers and staff tried to make

this a fun experience for students,” she said. “Students were all there voluntarily and we tried to make it feel like a summer camp of learning. There were a lot of hands-on activities to enrich and strengthen students’ skills.” Gleave said each morning they held a meeting where students had the opportunity to get to know one another. “These meetings always had a life skills component tied into them to boost student’s social skills. Bringing kids together from 10 different elementary schools around the valley provided many opportunities to make new connections,” she said. Within Crescent’s camp, they also hosted a newcomer academy, which had two classes of kindergarten through fifthgrade students who are new to the United States. One of the classes served eight students who spoke five different languages, she said. “The best part of the Summer Boost program was the kids. It was amazing after only three weeks how connected we felt to each other; I saw new friendships grow and develop between kids of all different backgrounds and circumstances,” Gleave said. “I know the parents of these students were grateful for the opportunity to send

their children to Summer Boost. I had several parents stop me before and after school to express their appreciation for the busing, meals and instruction that was provided to them at no cost.” In addition, high schools offered other programs, such as credit recovery and also the regular AVID Summer Bridge program at Jordan High and Husky Strong program were offered to incoming freshmen. Jordan High also sponsored a six-week Code to Success coding camp as well as reading and math interventions. Jameson said his school had its second summer reading program where students could check out books and read in the library. They also partnered with Salt Lake County libraries so a librarian came in to hold storytime and do crafts with the students that tied into literacy. Another component of Alta View’s program was a PTA and School Community Council volunteer taught parents DYAD reading, or a side-by-side reading strategy, and they were able to practice it alongside their children. “It really is a good program and a good group of teachers, librarians, parents and volunteers all involved to help our students with their reading and literacy,” he said. l

Riverton City Journal

During pandemic: traditional schools may resume ‘normal’ look, online learning options will continue By Julie Slama | j.slama@mycityjournals.com


s area students head back to school, it they receive from the county and state. may look more like a “normal” school “Our Board of Education has a very year. much hands-on (approach). They looked at Understanding that health and safety these situations and our school administraCOVID-19 protocols and guidelines may yet tion and our cabinet, they came up with the change, “as of right now, things will be clos- reopening plan when we reopened,” Riesgraf er to normal than not,” said Murray School said on July 1, adding if it comes to re-adDistrict spokesman Doug Perry on June 30. dressing the current health situation, “we “We follow state and local health de- will decide what works best in Jordan.” partment guidelines and mandates as they are A benefit from virtual learning during the health experts. As of right now, schools COVID-19 in Jordan School District was ofwill be open, no masks will be required,” he fering flexible Fridays, where teachers were said in late June. able to individually meet with students or Murray School District, like its neigh- small groups, in person or virtually, to offer boring districts—Canyons, Granite and Jor- additional instruction, enhanced learning dan districts, will offer in-person and online or review. This year, as a result of parent learning. surveys indicating its benefits, Jordan will “We will have two learning options, continue to offer the flexible Friday learning one in-person and one online for those who four times: Sept. 10, Nov. 19, Feb. 11, 2022, don’t feel comfortable or are at risk,” he and April 29, 2022. said. “Our bell schedule will revert back to Another positive outcome, Riesgraf what it was before the pandemic, so that in- said, was the establishment of offering oncludes a short day on Wednesdays. We have line learning in their own virtual schools— not heard of any recommendations regarding Rocky Peak Elementary, Kelsey Peak Middistancing and are presuming there will be dle and King Peak High. no distancing guideline but that’s not fully “Every student in the district has the determined.” option to sign up and attend at one of those Perry said that some sanitation proto- schools if they want to do online learning cols were good and may well continue, such this year,” she said. “The elementary and the as frequent handwashing and surface clean- middle school will offer in-person learning ing. one day a week so they will have the option While it’s not certain what schools will one day to come in and have in-person learnlook like when they start in mid-August, ing.” Perry said, “Our decisions impacted by She said that is unique and will give stuCOVID-19 are influenced heavily by expert dents an opportunity, if they choose, to have recommendations from the health depart- more hands-on learning and be able to work ment; the State Board of Education would in small groups or partners to build commube another important partner, along with our nity. colleagues in the other four Salt Lake Coun“I don’t know anybody else in the state ty school districts and those in neighboring is offering that and nobody else in the state counties.” is offering K through 12 (online education),” Granite School District spokesman she said, adding that students still are able Ben Horsley said that with their protocols to participate in extracurricular activities at in place, such as Test to Stay and Play, “we their boundary school. do not anticipate any additional COVID reCanyons School District also will offer strictions or mask requirements for this fall in-person learning and online options. at this time.” Last spring, Canyons students and facHowever, he pointed out that COVID-19 ulty and staff had the option to wear face has proven to be “a dynamic event that re- coverings its final week of school in the quires a lot of flexibility and adjustments. 2020-21 school year and like other districts, We are preparing for every potential scenar- it will abide by health and safety guidelines io.” and continue to monitor the situation, acAs of July 6, Granite District will of- cording to district spokeswoman Kirsten fer in-person “in the same fashion as it was Stewart in late June. pre-COVID,” five days per week. Families Alta View Elementary Principal Scott who still have concerns will have a distance Jameson said through use of technology, learning option at all grade levels. some positive aspects have come out of Jordan School District spokeswoman COVID-19. Sandra Riesgraf said that “we are going to “With virtual learning, we likely won’t be in the classrooms and right now, the plan have snow days where we have to make up is to have classrooms back to normal.” the learning day during the holiday breaks,” However, she added that could change he said. “Our teachers have learned to use depending on the pandemic and guidelines technology and use it effectively. Kids do


well with it in general so I can see using that experience and integrate more technology into the classroom or if we need to switch to teach online or hybrid again. Even elementary schools are using Canvas (learning platform) in their classrooms, so if a student is absent, they can log in to see what assignment they’re missing and if able to, be able to do it.” Jameson also said that all the “good hygiene” of hand-washing and hand-sanitizers will be encouraged in his school. In the spring, the district did establish a new online opportunity, updating its virtual high school offering. Canyons Board of Education approved the launch of Canyons Online, a technology-driven educational initiative for grades three through 12 that will begin this fall. “This past year has taught us how important in-person instruction is because of relationships and connections students make with teachers and their schools,” Canyons School District Superintendent Rick Robins said on March 31. “What it also has taught us is how we can deliver education virtually. Some of our students have flourished online,

while others have missed those relationships in our schools. We realize we can offer our students the flexibility of online learning while blending it with those connections.” That ability to make and maintain connections with their neighborhood schools is what makes Canyons Online unique among other online-learning programs, he said. Canyons Online elementary-age students will be able to participate in beforeand after-school music programs, science fair and debate. Middle-schoolers enrolled in Canyons Online can take electives at the local school, plus compete in science fairs and debate. Canyons Online high school students will be allowed to dual enroll so they can have full access to high school programs. “We’re re-establishing relationships with kids who have stayed online with their neighborhood schools to build that instruction and connection into Canyons Online,” Robins said. “The blended online format will have the academic component, whether it’s support and remediation or acceleration, plus the connection to their neighborhood school. This is really at the heart of what personalized learning can be.” l

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Riverton Jazz band tuning up for August show By Katherine Weinstein | k.weinstein@mycityjournals.com


etween the swinging music and the singers and dancers in period dress, a time traveler landing at Draper Amphitheater on Aug. 20 or 21 might think they had arrived sometime in the 1940s. On those evenings, Draper Arts Council will present “Dancing In The Stars: A Big Band Tribute.” Singers and dancers, accompanied by the Riverton Jazz Band, will perform a variety of songs from the “Great American Songbook.” Audience members are encouraged to get up and dance as well. “We usually have people who dress up and come to dance,” said producer Shauna Call. “We reserve the dance floor for the audience.” “Dancing In The Stars: A Big Band Tribute” has grown in popularity over the years. The show is “a coalition of singers, dancers and the band,” explained singer and director Valaura Arnold. “This is all of us, creating together.” “The Big Band Tribute has turned into something I’m so passionate about,” Arnold exclaimed. “I love Big Band and that era of music. These songs just speak to people.” She noted that the music has an appeal that spans generations.

Kerrie Neu, pianist and president of Riverton Jazz Band, looks forward to the opportunity to “share our appreciation of jazz and Big Band standards. We want to foster that love of music with younger people.” Neu also spoke of how the music invites older folks to take a trip down memory lane. “They might remember dancing, get a glint in their eye,” she said. “It brings back memories.” A record number of people auditioned for this year’s production. “Between the band, singers and dancers, we’ll have about 100 performers,” Arnold said. The production team has changed things up this year to accommodate the number of singers. “We’re going to do more of a pre-show with people singing with pre-recorded tracks,” Call explained. The pre-show performances will begin at 7:30 p.m. and go on while audience members are arriving. Additionally, there will be more group numbers than in years past. “We have so many artists, we can do lots of trios,” Arnold said. The music of the Andrews Sisters is ideally suited to this production. “We’re doing ones that bring back patriotic feelings, like ‘I’ll

Be Seeing You’ and ‘Boogie-Woogie Bugle Boy,’” she added. The singers and dancers will be costumed in 1940’s-style outfits. “They will be dressed to the nines for whatever the song requires,” Arnold said. The program will also include Big Band hits such as “In the Mood” and “Sing, Sing, Sing,” and Broadway classics like “My Funny Valentine” and “Almost Like Being In Love.” More recent songs, “It had Better Be Tonight” and “Feeling Good” by Michael Bublé, will be performed as well. Some of the songs will be given new interpretations. “We’re doing a new arrangement of ‘Sing, Sing, Sing,’” Kerrie Neu said. “We’re excited to be able to showcase that one this year. When Valaura sings ‘Feeling Good,’ that’s very fun!” Neu has been performing with Riverton Jazz Band for 13 years. She mentioned the organization’s nonprofit status and noted that each musician is a volunteer. As with so many other performing arts groups, the pandemic prevented the members from practicing and performing together. “I am just so grateful for the dedication of the band members,” Neu said. “We’re so excited to get the ball rolling again.” “We hope that people are just ready to get out and enjoy live music again,” said Shauna Call. Draper Arts Council will present “Dancing In The Stars: A Big Band Tribute,” Aug. 20 and 21 at Draper Amphitheater. The pre-show begins at 7:30 p.m. Draper Amphitheater is located at 944 Vestry Road. Tickets go on sale two weeks prior to opening night. For more information, call 385-351-9468 or visit the Draper Arts Council website at www.draperartscouncil.org. l


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801-790-2400 11052 Grapevine Cove Top: Valaura Arnold sings with Riverton Jazz Band in a past production of “Dancing In The Stars: A Big Band Tribute” at Draper Amphitheater. (Photo courtesy Valaura Arnold/Draper Arts Council) Bottom: Accompanied by Riverton Jazz Band, audience members enjoy the dance floor at “Dancing In The Stars: A Big Band Tribute” at Draper Amphitheater. (Photo courtesy Valaura Arnold/Draper Arts Council)

Page 22 | August 2021

Sandy, UT 84070 Riverton City Journal

Youth Riverton runners setting records, winning titles By Catherine Garrett | c.garrett@mycityjournals.com

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SERVICES WESTERN PROVIDERS OFFER: Riverton’s Mya Oyler (on far left) was part of the 4X800 Race Cats relay team that set a region record – which includes four other states – while also breaking a 35-year-old mark by 22 seconds at the USATF State Championship June 10-12 at Utah Valley University. She is pictured with area runners Anna Dorney and Natalie Roberts. Mya’s brother, Ashton Oyler, won the 1500 meter title at the state meet as well. (Photo courtesy Michele Brinkerhoff)

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Silverwolves hit the field again for soccer season Photos by Travis Barton


year after going 6-6, a season that featured its first win over local rivals Bingham since 2003, the Silverwolves return to the gridiron for the 2021 season. Riverton kicks off the year at Syracuse on Aug. 13 before returning for its home opener on Aug. 20 against Dixie. The team will play six non-region games that will also include Pleasant Grove, Cyprus This season marks the beginning of a new region alignment. The previous two seasons saw the Silverwolves battle Jordan and East in addition to west side opponents Copper Hills, Herriman and Bingham. For the next two seasons Riverton will play all teams within their close geographic realm, removing East and Jordan and replacing them with the recently-formed Mountain Ridge and former region rival West Jordan. Riverton West Jordan 21-SCCS-0239 - Jan21plays - StAndrewDirectMail-a3-pas.pdf (Sept. 17), Herriman (Oct. 1) and Mountain Ridge (Oct. 8) on the road while hosting Copper Hills (Sept. 24) and Bingham (Oct. 14). l




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Riverton City Journal

Funeral arrangements are a deeply personal choice. Preplanning provides you with the time needed to make practical, detailed decisions that reflect your standards, lifestyle, taste and budget. And we assure you and your family that the choices you make will be carried out as planned.


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The Southwest Valley Chamber welcomed SALT LAKE COMMUNITY COLLEGE AND UNIVERSITY OF UTAH at the long-awaited groundbreaking of the SLCC and U of U campus in Herriman. The site is near 14400 South and 4000 West and is 30 acres. The land was donated about ten years ago by Sorenson Legacy Foundation. Herriman has already developed the infrastructure and the campus will be welcoming students in 2023. It will serve more than 2,000 students in its first year and nearly 7,000 by 2025. Students who study at the campus will be able to earn an associate degree from SLCC and then attend the University of Utah to earn a bachelor’s degree, all at one location. Programs that will be offered are in high-demand industries, including teaching, health care, information systems, business, social work, criminal justice, engineering, and mathematics. Essential student services for both schools will also be available, including admissions, advising, disability support, financial aid, transfer support and tutoring. We also officially welcomed UCCU to Herriman. Grayson the branch manager welcomes you to come and visit him. It is great to have another option for your financial needs.



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UPCOMING EVENTS The Southwest Valley Chamber meets monthly for an AFTER-HOURS NETWORKING event. This is held the 2nd Thursday of each month at Redemption Bar & Grill. This starts at 4:00 and the cost is what you personally order. All are welcome to attend. WOMEN IN BUSINESS is up and ready for you to meet and connect with other likeminded women. FRIDAY CONNECTS is here—every 3rd Friday! Looking for ways to meet business professionals? Looking for a way to present your business to others? Looking for a RESULTS-oriented business relationship networking group? Three chambers of commerce have teamed up to bring you a speed networking phenomenon! Friday Connections provides an opportunity to connect at the speed of networking! Meet and take advantage of business connections on the 3rd Friday of every month from 8:30 - 10:00 am.

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August 2021 | Page 27

Riverton volleyball takes the court Photos by Justin Adams


he Riverton Silverwolves volleyball team returns to the court in August, a year after the pandemic-affected season of 2020. That edition finished 10-13 falling in a tight first-round matchup to region foe West 3-2. Riverton won’t have to worry about West this season as it begins a new region with similar faces (Bingham, Herriman and Copper Hills), returning faces (West Jordan) and an almost completely new one (Mountain Ridge). The Silverwolves early preseason slate will feature Clearfield, Granger and Corner Canyon. l



Page 28 | August 2021

Riverton City Journal


Riverton volleyball takes the court

he Sentinels join an all-new region and classification this year as they move up from 5A to 6A. The new region is more geographically friendly though as all five opponents fall in the same school district: Herriman, Riverton, Bingham, Copper Hills and West Jordan. l

Photos by Justin Adams

MOUNTAIN RIDGE VOLLEYBALL SCHEDULE Aug. 17 vs Cedar Valley Aug. 19 vs Westlake Aug. 24 at Farmington Aug. 31 at Northridge Sept. 2 vs Corner Canyon Sept. 7 vs Skyridge Sept. 14 vs Bingham Sept. 16 vs Copper Hills

Sept. 21 at Riverton Sept. 23 vs Herriman Sept. 28 at West Jordan Sept. 30 at Copper Hills Oct. 5 at Bingham Oct. 12 vs Riverton Oct. 14 at Herriman Oct. 26 vs West Jordan

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August 2021 | Page 29 7/22/2021 2:17:10 PM

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LORETTA MUIRBROOK ANNOUNCES PUBLICATION OF FIRST BOOK, “I AM”, A MOTIVATIONAL CHILDREN’S BOOK. Ms. Muirbrook, a local resident, is the owner and wellness coach at Infinity Health & Wellness. She is the mother of two and travels between Utah and Colorado for work. She shared that the book is the first in a series with the next book being completed very soon.“I was inspired to create this book to help children see their wor th in a world full of negativity,” says Loretta.“My goal with this book is to help children star t using powerful positive words that will build self-confidence and self-esteem that will last a lifetime.” For more information visit www.infinityhealthwellness.net.

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Young at heart My grandson and I thought we’d practice hitting golf balls into lakes and shrubbery, so we went to a par 3 course to get our game on. It was sunny, the birds were singing, everything was right with the world, until the clueless 20-something young man at the counter asked if I was eligible for the senior discount. Cue record scratch. First, I’m NOT. Second, you NEVER ask a woman if she’s eligible for the senior discount. I’ll die at 107 without ever accepting a $3 dotage deduction off ANYTHING. Soon after my ego-destroying golf course incident, I visited my dad in the hospital when the nurse assumed I was his wife. First, eww. Second, I have to accept the fact that my “Best By Date” has come and gone. It’s not that I wander the streets carrying a tabby cat and a bag of knitting, but I find myself becoming less visible to anyone under 30. Trying to get help at a store is impossible because I must look like a pair of sandals walking around by themselves. No one wants to help a foot ghost. I receive barely disguised disdain at the make-up counter as the salesperson indifferently directs me to the anti-aging, skin-firming, wrinkle-removing face spackle, even if I want mascara. It’s a social


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science experiment to get older. Gen Zers hype equality, but only for demographics they care about. But here’s the secret: I don’t give one flying Fig Newton (old people cookies) if the Millennial and Gen Z crowds think I’m irrelevant. I’m a laid-back Gen Xer, raised with minimal adult supervision to be independent, resourceful, fun, flexible and humorous. [Me, shaking my cane at the world]. My generation learned to entertain themselves before the Internet but also became technologically savvy as high-tech advanc-

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By Mimi Darley Dutton | m.dutton@mycityjournals.com


he Point will hold an Open House Aug. 12 to announce a framework master plan for the 600 acres of state-owned property that has been touted as a once in a generation project. After hiring internationally renowned firm Skidmore, Owings & Merrill last December, much of 2021 was spent developing the plan with multiple public input opportunities. The Point also announced the hiring of Scott Cuthbertson as Director of Operations. “The Open House is an opportunity for us to roll out the framework master plan for the site. We want people to be able to see how their input has been transferred into plans and how the pieces come together,” said Alan Matheson, The Point’s executive director, who said they’ve listened to more than 10,000 people in the process thus far. “People will see a vibrant, future-focused community that tries to improve the quality of life for people in Utah.” According to Matheson, the main components of the framework plan are innovation, future-focused transportation, an emphasis on sustainability, and places for people to gather to enjoy entertainment and open space. Where innovation is concerned, Matheson said public and private sector partnerships will work to solve some of society’s challenges such as air quality, changing climate, advanced energy innovation, biotechnology, life sciences, and potentially cyber security. He anticipates cutting edge research will take place at the site with “incubators and accelerators that help take those ideas to market.”

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In advance of the August Open House announcing a framework master plan, The Point provided this visual of what the public can expect. (Courtesy The Point) Future-focused transportation plans include transit Standard Bus Rapid Transit with designated rights of way, sigthroughout the site so that people living and working there can nal prioritization (traffic lights change to keep the special bushave but won’t need more than one vehicle. It will feature Gold es moving) Continued page 6

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